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Ecology Lab

They may look alien, but these creatures help keep the balance of marine and coastal ecosystems right in our backyard.

Interact with marine invertebrates such as sea stars, urchins, snails, crabs and more to gain a better understanding of the critical roles they play in their ecosystems. Learn about taxonomy by identifying and classifying these marine species by their shared characteristics.

Reserve This Program

Fill out our form to begin your reservation. Lab experiences last 45 minutes. Each session accommodates up to 30 individuals. Experiences are primarily offered during core hours of 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Virtual

  • Offered Monday–Friday
  • Requires a strong internet connection
  • $200 for first virtual lab; 10% each additional virtual lab of the same theme on the same day

In Person

  • Primarily offered on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays
  • Hosted at your site; requires a classroom, library or other quiet setting
  • $250 for first in-person lab; 10% off each additional lab of the same theme on the same day

Requests for alternate days or times will be considered. Within 48 hours after you submit your request, an Education Outreach team member will contact you to discuss your proposed itinerary. Once everything is reviewed and set, the invoice will be sent.

Alignments

Check out how our program aligns to Florida Department of Education and Scout benchmarks:

  • K - 2

    Kindergarten

    • SC.K.L.14.3: Observe plants and animals, describe how they are alike and how they are different in the way they look and in the things they do.
    • SC.K.L.14.1: Recognize the five senses and related body parts.
    • SC.K.N.1.2: Make observations of the natural world and know that they are descriptors collected using the five senses.

    1st Grade

    • SC.1.L.14.1: Make observations of living things and their environment using the five senses.
    • SC.1.L.14.3: Differentiate between living and nonliving things.
    • SC.1.L.17.1: Through observation, recognize that all plants and animals, including humans, need the basic necessities of air, water, food, and space.

    2nd Grade

    • SC.2.L.14.1: Distinguish human body parts (brain, heart, lungs, stomach, muscles, and skeleton) and their basic functions.
    • SC.2.L.17.1: Compare and contrast the basic needs that all living things, including humans, have for survival.
    • SC.2.L.17.2: Recognize and explain that living things are found all over Earth, but each is only able to live in habitats that meet its basic needs.
  • 3 - 5

    3rd Grade

    • SC.3.N.1.1: Raise questions about the natural world, investigate them individually and in teams through free exploration and systematic investigations, and generate appropriate explanations based on those explorations.
    • SC.3.L.17.1: Describe how animals and plants respond to changing seasons.
    • SC.3.L.15.1: Classify animals into major groups (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, arthropods, vertebrates and invertebrates, those having live births and those which lay eggs) according to their physical characteristics and behaviors.

    4th Grade

    • SC.4.L.17.4: Recognize ways plants and animals, including humans, can impact the environment.
    • SC.4.L.17.2: Explain that animals, including humans, cannot make their own food and that when animals eat plants or other animals, the energy stored in the food source is passed to them.
    • SC.4.L.16.3: Recognize that animal behaviors may be shaped by heredity and learning.

    5th Grade

    • SC.5.L.14.2: Compare and contrast the function of organs and other physical structures of plants and animals, including humans, for example: some animals have skeletons for support - some with internal skeletons others with exoskeletons - while some plants have stems for support.
    • SC.5.L.17.1: Compare and contrast adaptations displayed by animals and plants that enable them to survive in different environments such as life cycles variations, animal behaviors and physical characteristics.
    • SC.5.L.15.1: Describe how, when the environment changes, differences between individuals allow some plants and animals to survive and reproduce while others die or move to new locations.
  • 6 - 8

    6th Grade

    • SC.6.N.1.3: Explain the difference between an experiment and other types of scientific investigation, and explain the relative benefits and limitations of each.
    • SC.6.N.1.5: Recognize that science involves creativity, not just in designing experiments, but also in creating explanations that fit evidence.
    • SC.6.L.15.1: Analyze and describe how and why organisms are classified according to shared characteristics with emphasis on the Linnaean system combined with the concept of Domains.

    7th Grade

    • SC.7.L.15.2: Explore the scientific theory of evolution by recognizing and explaining ways in which genetic variation and environmental factors contribute to evolution by natural selection and diversity of organisms.
    • SC.7.L.17.1: Explain and illustrate the roles of and relationships among producers, consumers, and decomposers in the process of energy transfer in a food web.
    • SC.7.L.17.3: Describe and investigate various limiting factors in the local ecosystem and their impact on native populations, including food, shelter, water, space, disease, parasitism, predation, and nesting sites.


    8th Grade

    • SC.8.N.1.6: Understand that scientific investigations involve the collection of relevant empirical evidence, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses, predictions, explanations and models to make sense of the collected evidence.
    • SC.8.N.4.1: Explain that science is one of the processes that can be used to inform decision making at the community, state, national, and international levels.
    • SC.8.N.4.2: Explain how political, social, and economic concerns can affect science, and vice versa.
  • 9 - 12
    This program is generally offered for K - 8 audiences. If you'd like to reserve it for high school level participants, please contact the Education Outreach team and share your focused area of study so that we can upscale the experience based on your needs.
  • Girl Scout Badges and Patches

    Eco Learner (Daisy/Brownie) and Animal Habitats (Junior)

    animalhabitats.jpgecolearner.jpg

     

More to Explore

Want to get more from your adventures?

Combine labs, demos and field trips to reinforce learning and fun.

  • DNA Detectives – Explore the mysteries that can be solved through the power of genetics through this lab which examines different methods to extract and analyze DNA.
  • Squid Dissection – Starting out as zooplankton, discover how a squid’s unique internal and external morphology is crucial to its survival.